You walk into a hospital, a doctor’s office, or a nursing home and you see soothing artwork on the walls. The art provides a calm mood and a bit of relaxation, which is essential for such serious or stress-inducing environments.
You see these pieces all the time, but do you know how much goes into each one? Did you know that each bit of art has meaning, as well as careful and deliberate thought that goes into each decision? Think about it, you don’t want the artwork in a doctor’s office to remind you of needles and a nursing home certainly doesn’t want something depressing. These areas need calming, positive, and relaxing art that doesn’t evoke extreme emotions.
So, who can make these educated and knowledgeable decisions?
Health Design Expert
Jenna, an experienced artist on staff, earned a highly respected Healthcare Art Certification – the Health Design Certification. She has a background in art already, but she decided to dive into how to properly cater to the specific needs of the healthcare field.
We interviewed Jenna about her certification to learn more.
An Interview With Jenna About Her Health Design Certification
Q: Tell us about the process you went through to get this special certification.
A: I started by researching what was required of an individual to get this certification from The Center for Health Design. The EDAC exam is a two-hour, 110-question multiple-choice exam. The exam’s five sections will test you on evidence-based design in healthcare, the research process, the pre-design process, construction, and occupancy. The exam tests your ability to practice the EBD process—not the evidence itself.
Q: What is Evidence-based design?
A: A large and growing body of evidence attests to the fact that the physical environment impacts patient stress, patient and staff safety, staff effectiveness, and quality of care provided in hospitals and other healthcare settings. Basing healthcare facility planning and design decisions on this evidence to achieve the best possible patient, staff, and operational outcomes is what evidence-based design is all about.
Evidence-Based Design (EBD) is the process of basing decisions about the built environment on credible research to achieve the best possible outcomes. Included in this process are the following eight steps:
· Define evidence-based goals and objectives.
· Find sources for relevant evidence.
· Critically interpret relevant evidence.
· Create and innovate evidence-based design concepts.
· Develop a hypothesis.
· Collect baseline performance measures.
· Monitor implementation of design and construction.
· Measure post-occupancy performance results.
A: I studied the three books for Exam prep for about 6 months, as well as doing the online practice exams. Then I took the exam at the Healthcare Conference in San Diego in November of 2014.
Q: Do you know approximately how many others have this type of certification in your field?A: There are approximately 1840 people with this certification. Less than a dozen of those are Art Consultants like me.Q: What major benefits do you see this certification bringing to Spacia Group clients?A: Healing art is more than a statement of style, it can help improve the mental and emotional state of patients, visitors, and employees. It is utilizing certain key artistic elements to convey and induce particular emotions. Studies show that there’s a mind-body connection, and the mounting evidence of art’s therapeutic benefits are indisputable. From giving children hope in a difficult situation to helping to sooth pain for cancer patients, art plays a factor in the emotional well-being. This certification allows Spacia Group to provide healthcare facilities and insights for designers with in-demand and healthful art that can assist with creating a positive and uplifting atmosphere where needed.Q: How did this certification (process) broaden your perspective in the healthcare space? Creatively? Strategically?
A: An EDAC certified individual is approved and encouraged to make design decisions and recommendations based upon the best available research information. Using this process has been proven, through extensive research by experts in every facet of healthcare, to produce measurable improvements in healthcare facility clinical outcomes, economic performance, productivity, customer and staff satisfaction, and cultural measures.
Q: What are you the proudest of after going through this process?
A: This is a strenuous preparation process and it required a lot of time and dedication to studying and really understanding the entire concept from start to finish. The exam is the same whether you are a healthcare provider, contractor for construction, the CEO of a healthcare corporation, or an artist. You really have to understand a lot of information that is outside of your realm of previous knowledge to be able to pass this test. It is not an easy exam.
Q: What was an interesting thing that you learned?
A: How much the built environment can affect the amount of time a patient can spend in the healthcare facility. It is not only measurable but exponentially more effective when a patient is in an environment designed for them to succeed in recovery rather than a setting that was not designed with the intent of helping them through that process.
Who Should Be EDAC Certified?
· Architects & Designers – They have a method for developing design solutions that are rooted in research and likely to achieve a client’s goals.
· Hospital Executives – They champion innovation that’s good for the bottom line.
· Healthcare Providers – They support new ideas in healthcare design that align with organizational goals and are likely to achieve the desired results.
· Academics/Researchers/Students – They are on top of the most significant, emerging discipline within the healthcare design profession and can help carry the teachings forward.
· Engineering & Construction Professionals – They understand the importance of research-based design decisions and can maintain the integrity of these decisions during the engineering and construction processes.
· Product Manufacturers and Art Consultants – They use research to inform the product development process and support improved outcomes in healthcare settings.
We are proud of our people and our capabilities, and Jenna’s accomplishment is no exception. We are excited to address the healthcare needs through evidence-based design. Click to learn more about our markets and services. Check out our art inspiration gallery to browse some of our work or contact us to get a conversation started!